Purdue University Northwest is making big strides in proving they excel at more than just engineering.
“The Roundtable Perspective” (formerly “The Calumet Roundtable”) is a collegiate television program produced by students and faculty of the Department of Communication and Creative Arts at PNW.
Offered as a class, the show gives students a chance to learn the inner workings of television production while earning college credit in the process. Students are responsible for nearly every facet of the show, ranging from camera operation to advertising and social media.
“It is not a simulated classroom experience. They get to produce a show that airs over the entire Chicagoland area,” said Communication and Creative Arts department head Dr. Tom Roach. “That gives them a unique advantage over other broadcasting programs.”
The interview-based show gives experts a platform to discuss topics ranging from politics to physics. Roach, who is also a host, believes this format offers a unique perspective.
“The Roundtable interviews are intended for people who want an in-depth understanding of issues that are emerging,” Roach said.
This summer, PNW remodeled their television studio, investing nearly $140,000 in new equipment. The department is hopeful this upgrade should have a major impact.
“It is important to have a more modern atmosphere and expose students to state-of-the-art equipment,” said Jake Giles, who manages the studio. “Students get a hands-on experience that is more relatable to the real world.” Along with changes in the studio, the show also changed networks this season from ION Television to Lakeshore PBS. According to Giles, ION’s shift to public affairs programming prompted the switch.
“This gives us a much wider audience,” Giles said. “Now more people can be exposed to our content.” The show airs every Friday at 8:00 p.m. on Lakeshore PBS. Giles, along with the rest of the department, has high hopes for the future of the program.
“Lakeshore has a great relationship with the community,” Giles said. “They’re all about local programming and communicating to the Chicagoland area. We are right in the heart of that.”
For more information about the show, or to watch past episodes, visit theroundtableperspective.com.